Your weekly look back and forward at a few of the tastiest matchups and most important games in that sexy mistress that is Europe.
Espanyol v Barcelona – Barcelona and Luis Suarez easily dispatched Espanyol 3-0. Suarez bookended the scoring and with Real Madrid focused on Champions League after their midweek thrashing of Atletico look to be the favorites for the Domestic Double.
Roma v Lazio – The Rome Derby was the premier match in Serie A and Lazio in their quest to finish top 4 did not disappoint. They secured a 3-1 win, which keeps both teams in their respective positions, Roma in 2nd and Lazio in 4th. The result does potentially open the door for Napoli to sneak into 2nd position with further Roma screwups.
Nice v PSG – PSG came in fresh off beating the shit out of Monaco in the domestic cup semifinals and hoped to secure a win at 3rd place Nice and keep the pressure on Monaco, but it was not to be as they fell 3-1 to the home side. Mario Balotelli did some eye popping shit with a long ranger to open the scoring. PSG are still 2nd, but 3 points off of Monaco and only 3 ahead of Nice, and Monaco has a game in hand.
Tottenham v Arsenal – St. Totteringham’s Day has been cancelled for the first time in 22 years, as the Spurs managed to stay hot and beat Arsenal 2-0. Don’t worry Gunners fans, the Spurs move to Wembley for the next two seasons while their new blood money stadium is built at the Lane. The Spurs at Wembley this year have been god awful, so the rest of the EPL fans at least have that to look forward to next year.
Coming up this weekend!
Dortmund v Hoffenheim – A #4 vs #3 Matchup at the Westfalenstadion. Hoffenheim have secured Champions League football for next year and a win or a draw and any dropped points by Hertha would secure CL for Dortmund as well. Only one point separates these two teams so the winner has the inside track to avoid the Champions League Playoff round.
Juventus v Torino – Turin Derby, coming off a 2-0 Champions League win Juve may be inclined to sit some starters, especially with the return leg at home on Tuesday, but Juve can secure the league title with a win and Roma dropping any points vs. AC Milan on Sunday. Torino sits in 9th with no chance at European qualification so they are just hoping to steal some points from their cross town rivals.
Barcelona v Villareal – First place Barca host fifth place Villareal. Villareal are currently in a Europa spot with an outside shot of catching Sevilla for the final Champions League spot in Spain. They definitely need a result here as they are 6 points behind but have only 3 matches to make up the difference, Sevilla only has 2.
AC Milan v Roma – You get two Serie A matches in the preveiw this week, because AC Milan sit in 6th place and currently out of European competition, 5 points behind Atalanta. Roma in 2nd over Napoli by only a point. Milan need to get their ass in gear and their recent run of form has not been encouraging
Arsenal v Man United – The battle of man, these teams mattered like 3 year ago, right? Technically these two teams are still competing for Champions League qualification in England but currently sit on the outside looking in, 6th and 5th, respectively. Honestly the best chance either has to make Europe would be to win the remaining competitions they are in, Man United in Europa and Arsenal in the FA Cup.
Bonus Champions League Midweek Coverage
Juventus v Monaco (2-0) – Higuain scored two away goals in Monaco this past week to all but secure the final for Juve. It would take an epic collapse for Monaco to go through, but this team does have the firepower, maybe if they can find an early one and get some confidence.
Atletico Madrid v Real Madrid (0-3) – Cristiano Ronaldo continues to be the greatest male player in the world. If I needed one person to play soccer for my life it would be him. Now if I needed someone to play on a team for my life it’d be Messi, but that’s neither here nor there. In the 4th Madrid Derby of the year Atletico is going to need one helluva come back to get back to the final.
Sit back, crack a Heineken (or your beer of choice, just don’t put any fucking fruit in there) and enjoy the matches my friends.